Wash v. t. [imp. & p. p. Washed p. pr. & vb. n. Washing.]
1. To cleanse by ablution, or dipping or rubbing in water; to apply water or other liquid to for the purpose of cleansing; to scrub with water, etc., or as with water; as, to wash the hands or body; to wash garments; to wash sheep or wool; to wash the pavement or floor; to wash the bark of trees.
When Pilate saw that he could prevail nothing, . . . he took water and washed his hands before the multitude, saying, I am innocent of the blood of this just person. --Matt. xxvii. 24.
2. To cover with water or any liquid; to wet; to fall on and moisten; hence, to overflow or dash against; as, waves wash the shore.
Fresh-blown roses washed with dew. --Milton.
[The landscape] washed with a cold, gray mist. --Longfellow.
3. To waste or abrade by the force of water in motion; as, heavy rains wash a road or an embankment.
4. To remove by washing to take away by, or as by, the action of water; to drag or draw off as by the tide; -- often with away, off, out, etc.; as, to wash dirt from the hands.
Arise, and be baptized, and wash away thy sins. --Acts xxii. 16.
The tide will wash you off. --Shak.
5. To cover with a thin or watery coat of color; to tint lightly and thinly.
6. To overlay with a thin coat of metal; as, steel washed with silver.
7. To cause dephosphorisation of (molten pig iron) by adding substances containing iron oxide, and sometimes manganese oxide.
8. To pass (a gas or gaseous mixture) through or over a liquid for the purpose of purifying it, esp. by removing soluble constituents.
To wash gold, etc., to treat earth or gravel, or crushed ore, with water, in order to separate the gold or other metal, or metallic ore, through their higher density.
To wash the hands of. See under Hand.
Washed a. Zool. Appearing as if overlaid with a thin layer of different color; -- said of the colors of certain birds and insects.
adj 1: clean by virtue of having been washed in water [syn: water-washed]
2: wet as from washing; sometimes used in combination;